Cattermole can take game to next level, says O'Neill.
Martin O’Neill believes Lee Cattermole can take his game to new heights after seeing his captain commit his future to Sunderland.
Cattermole, 24, has signed an extension to his current contract which will see him remain at the Stadium of Light until 2016.
He is closing in on a century of appearances for Sunderland and is a key member of O’Neill’s side.
And the Wearside chief is of the opinion that his skipper can find another gear in the months and years to come.
“I’ve said before that Lee is a very good captain, and he’s excellent in the dressing room with the players as well,” O’Neill explained.
“I think he can go to another level. He has exceptional potential.
“I’ve only got to know Lee in the last nine or 10 months and during that time he has been looking to improve his own game.
“As a consequence, in some of our battles last season he was trying to help everyone else around him as well.
“Sometimes he maybe needs to concentrate on his own particular game, but I do think he can flourish.
“A lot of it is up to himself, but I think Lee is capable of doing more.”